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Last updated on April 20, 2014 at 5:20 EDT

Latest Constructal theory Stories

2013-07-09 11:43:45

Max Scherzer leads Major League Baseball in wins. As a pitcher for the Detroit Tigers, he hasn't lost a game this season. His 6-foot, 3-inch frame is a telling example of constructal-law theory, said Duke University engineer Adrian Bejan. The theory predicts that elite pitchers will continue to be taller and thus throw faster and seems also to apply to athletes who compete in golf, hockey and boxing. Studying athletes -- since most sports are meticulous in keeping statistics -- provides...

2011-03-01 13:15:01

Why is it that the same teams seem to dominate the annual men's collegiate basketball tournament? For that matter, why does the same small group of institutions seem to top annual best-college rankings? According to a theory developed by a Duke University engineer, these hierarchies are not only natural, but predictable. Just as continually growing streams flow into a larger river, or smaller and smaller branches grow out from a single tree trunk, examples of these hierarchies abound in the...

2010-11-30 15:22:00

NEWTON, Mass., Nov. 30, 2010 /PRNewswire/ -- General Compression, Inc. ("GC"), a Massachusetts company developing an innovative compressed air energy storage system that burns no fuel when generating electricity, announced today that it has appointed Professor Adrian Bejan of Duke University, Professor Sylvie Lorente of University of Toulouse, and Dr. Monika Ivantysynova of Purdue University to General Compression's Technical Advisory Board ("GC TAB"). The GC TAB was formed in 2010 to...

2010-07-12 13:21:20

In the record books, the swiftest sprinters tend to be of West African ancestry and the faster swimmers tend to be white. A study of the winning times by elite athletes over the past 100 years reveals two distinct trends: not only are these athletes getting faster over time, but there is a clear divide between racers in terms of body type and race. Last year, a Duke University engineer explained the first trend "“ athletes are getting faster because they are getting bigger. Adrian...

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2010-06-14 07:35:00

While the evolution from the Neolithic solid stone wheel with a single hole for an axle to the sleek wheels of today's racing bikes can be seen as the result of human ingenuity, it also represents how animals, including humans, have come to move more efficiently and quicker over millions of years on Earth, according to a Duke University engineer. Adrian Bejan, professor of mechanical engineering at Duke's Pratt School of Engineering, argues that just as the design of wheels became lighter...

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2009-12-21 08:37:43

The Egyptians supposedly used it to guide the construction the Pyramids. The architecture of ancient Athens is thought to have been based on it. Fictional Harvard symbologist Robert Langdon tried to unravel its mysteries in the novel The Da Vinci Code. "It" is the golden ratio, a geometric proportion that has been theorized to be the most aesthetically pleasing to the eye and has been the root of countless mysteries over the centuries. Now, a Duke University engineer has found it to be a...

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2009-07-17 09:25:00

While watching swimmers line up during the 2008 Olympic Games in Beijing, former Olympic swimmer and NBC Sports commentator Rowdy Gaines quipped that swimmers keep getting bigger, with the shortest one in the current race towering over the average spectator. What may have been seen as an off-hand remark turns out to illustrate a trend in human development -- elite athletes are getting bigger and bigger. What Gaines did not know was that a new theory by Duke University engineers has indeed...

2009-04-29 08:28:43

- Living beings and inanimate phenomena may have more in common than previously thought.At least that is the view of Duke University engineer Adrian Bejan and Penn State biologist James Marden.What they believe connects the two worlds is a theory that flow systems "“ from animal locomotion to the formation of river deltas -- evolve in time to balance and minimize imperfections. Flows evolve to reduce friction or other forms of resistance, so that they flow more easily with time. This...

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2008-08-14 16:52:17

What do a tree and the Eiffel Tower have in common? According to a Duke University engineer, both are optimized for flow. In the case of trees, the flow is of water from the ground throughout the trunk, branches and leaves, and into the air. The Eiffel Tower's flow carries stresses throughout the structure without collapsing under its own weight or being downed by the wind. For most engineers, the laws governing fluid and solid mechanics like these examples are like oil and water "“...

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2006-01-03 17:50:00

NASA -- A single unifying physics theory can essentially describe how animals of every ilk, from flying insects to fish, get around, researchers at Duke University's Pratt School of Engineering and Pennsylvania State University have found. The team reports that all animals bear the same stamp of physics in their design. The researchers show that so-called "constructal theory" can explain basic characteristics of locomotion for every creature -- how fast they get from one place to another and...